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Saturday, January 30, 2010

"Greedy" Libertarians

Also invariably critics on the left accuse libertarians of being "selfish" and "greedy" and being for rich people and against ordinary people. This charge is so far off the mark and beside the point it is almost impossible to respond to. It’s like accusing a computer of being short. It has nothing to do with what a computer is. But we get stuck in those kinds of arguments. For me, the best or at least most effective argument for libertarianism is that it is the one approach to governance that has the greatest hope of producing a humane society. The problem is to find a way to explain to people why that is so. "Progressives" like to consider themselves humane and singular in their concern for their fellow man. I don’t doubt the good intentions of those who consider themselves progressive (although, given the history of mankind you would have be somewhat dim to believe collectivism of any sort can lead to anything except misery and misery primarily for the most vulnerable and unconnected), but they seem not to be able to see the implications and unintended consequences of their philosophy. -- Doug Carkuff

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